York Settlement Community Players presents:
The Duchess of Malfi
By John Webster
York Theatre Royal Studio, 6 – 16 March
To prevent their sister from marrying the man she loves, two siblings take increasingly desperate and grotesque steps to bring about her downfall.
John Webster’s Jacobean masterpiece of obsession, passion, blood and revenge The Duchess of Malfi is brought alive in a dynamic and modern new production by York Settlement Community Players at York Theatre Royal Studio from 6 to 16 March.
Sam Taylor, who makes his York directorial debut, trained as an actor at the London Academy of Dramatic Art (LAMDA) and his stage work includes multiple productions at the National Theatre and with the Royal Shakespeare Company. He now works all over the UK as a photographer, specialising in rehearsal and production photography for theatre, film and TV.
He said: “At its heart, The Duchess of Malfi is very much akin to a modern day thriller. We have cut the text to concentrate purely on the central story – how the Duchess’ love for Antonio causes her brothers to tear down her life in revenge. The play is fast-paced and exciting, and we present it in a little over two hours. It is a fabulous, accessible introduction to anyone who hasn’t experienced much classical theatre.”
“Webster’s play is full of some of the most beautiful language in the history of theatre. The themes of the play are quite dark, but some of the writing is extremely funny. We stage the play in a slick and modern way: we will to grab you by the collar and take you with us on a journey.”
“The cast is a mix of experienced actors from the community, as well as some brand new faces. While maintaining the high production standards of previous YSCP shows, The Duchess of Malfi will push things forward stylistically.”